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Gold Line Officials Exempted From State’s Conflicting Offices Law

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SAN GABRIEL VALLEY (CBS) — California Governor Jerry Brown signed into law Friday a bill that specifically exempts officials of a San Gabriel Valley light-rail project from another state law that prohibits them from holding numerous public offices with interests that could conflict.

The measure by Assemblywoman Norma Torres and five colleagues applies to board members and board alternates of the Metro Gold Line Foothill Extension Construction Authority, which is now building an 11-mile light-rail segment between Pasadena and Azusa.

State Law generally forbids public officials from serving on multiple boards, commissions, city councils and other governing bodies with interests that could possibly clash.

Torres’ legislation is designed to neutralize a complaint to the state attorney general filed by Christopher Sutton, a Pasadena attorney who is representing a property owner involved in a condemnation dispute with the rail agency.

After the complaint was filed, three officials resigned from the board, including Los Angeles City Councilman Ed Reyes.

Reyes said he did so to protect his position on the council in case the attorney general concluded that he held incompatible offices.

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